Creative photos and essays from the San Juan Islands


Long way from home

Long way from home

Over fifty years after rolling off the assembly line, here sits a 1962 Ford F-350 flatbed truck I bought from the Port of Friday Harbor many years ago, still functional, though it hasn’t been registered for well over a decade. It is now used on a private 325 acre recreational ranch near Cle Elum, Washington where I had gone for a family camping reunion the latter part of July, 2013.

Years ago I had traded the truck for a huge peddle kayak to my brother Dick, who lived on San Juan Island at that time. My brother later took the truck to the ranch from his place seven miles out of Chehalis, south of Olympia, WA, so it’s been around a bit.

Walking back to camp from the showers, I found the venerable old Ford sitting, I imagined waiting to be useful, its windshield grimy and wet from morning dew, the adhesive from the old Port of Friday Harbor signs still visible on the doors. For visitors to the ranch it may be a mystery of how a work truck from the San Juan Islands ended up in the Cascade Mountains, probably for the remainder of its ride.

Likewise, I ponder the exodus of people I’ve met in the islands who, like this old truck, have left for one reason or another, and are now scattered hither and yon. In fact, my brother called this morning just before he and my sister-in-law Linda were to leave on a visit to one of those expats who now lives in very rural Idaho, the same couple who replaced my wife and I as caretakers at the Seattle Yacht Club outstation on Henry Island back in 1978.

Reminds me of watching an ant hill. Some come, some go, and where have they been? Where are they going? We’re all just a bunch of ants with our Honda sedans and old Ford trucks, coming and going.


One response

  1. We both loved that old Ford flatbed. It is a six cylinder that, like the Timex, just keeps on ticking. Thanks for the memories!

    August 8, 2013 at 8:52 am

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